Only Washington could create a sleazy charlatan like Bob Gates and pass him off as some bipartisan example of competence and honor.
With his new memoir out justifiably sliming President Obama, Vice President Biden and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Gates makes like a greasy, mange-patched rat scrambling atop the floating debris of a sunken ship.
“I never doubted Obama’s support for the troops,” Gates grandly writes, posturing himself as the magnanimous centrist that passes for nobility only here in Washington.
“Never doubted Obama’s support for the troops, only his support for their mission.”
Holy cripes, how did this get past an editor. Does the guy not have any friends to glance over his book to tell him what a treacherous wretch he is for even thinking such a stupid thought, let alone memorializing it forever in a hardcover book about himself that he modestly titled “Duty?”
I will tell you what “duty” is. “Duty” is getting out of high school and signing up for the Marines because you love your country. “Duty” is the unquestioned following of your orders and deploying to Iraq and Afghanistan on a mission to make America safer. “Duty” is Skyping with your wife and young, growing family and keeping upbeat even though you will go on a mission tomorrow morning that very likely will get both of your legs and your right arm blown off.
“Duty” is being that wife who sheds not a tear in front of her children, but bawls though her prayers to God that night alone in bed to keep the father of her children safe for one more day. “Duty” is the mother who bravely accepts the folded flag from her teenage son’s casket in a frozen graveyard. “Duty” is the father who searches around his intolerable grief to grasp the pride he has for his only son who gave every last measure on a battlefield far, far away.
So, tell us, Gates, how it is possible for a commander in chief to “support” the troops, but not their “mission?”
Does he do this by keeping the troops in harm’s way to die for a cause he does not believe is worthy? Does he “support” the troops by sending over even more to die for this unworthy cause?
I don’t like speaking for other people, especially people who have wept, bled and died for my freedom, but I am pretty sure the troops and their families don’t much care for that kind of “support.”
You, like your commander in chief, have a seriously warped notion of what “support” means. Not to mention “duty.”
Support would be to never send soldiers to die for a mission not worth dying for. As secretary of defense and president of the United States, that would be your responsibility to determine. Or, “duty,” if you like. If they are dying for something you honestly believe the commander in chief does not believe in, then you have a duty to quit and and make known your grave concerns about such treasonous leadership.
Gates also reveals Washington’s worst-kept secret for the past four decades: Joe Biden has actually been WRONG about every major foreign policy issue of his time. Such ineptitude would get anybody fired from Macy’s shoe department. But around here it makes Biden the reigning expert on foreign affairs and chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for years.
Gates also smears Hillary Clinton by relaying a conversation she had with President Obama where both of them admit that they opposed sending reinforcement troops into Iraq when the fighting got particularly nasty because each was afraid it might hurt their political careers.
Dear God, save America!
• Charles Hurt can be reached at email@example.com and on Twitter at @charleshurt.